Preventing a roundworm infection 

As well as treating roundworm infections with medication, the infection can be controlled by improving sanitation and health education.

Although treatments are usually effective, preventing roundworm infections that affect tropical countries is very challenging.

Infection control

Good hand hygiene can help prevent the spread of roundworm. Always wash your hands thoroughly:

  • after using the toilet
  • after changing a nappy
  • after touching soil
  • before preparing and eating food

Travel advice

You'll need to take extra precautions when travelling to parts of the world where roundworm is widespread, sanitation is poor and the climate is hot.

Places where roundworm is particularly widespread include:

  • Asia – particularly China, India and the large islands of East Asia, such as Indonesia
  • sub-Saharan Africa (all the countries south of the Sahara Desert) such as Kenya and Nigeria
  • South and Central America, and the Caribbean
  • the Middle East

If you're travelling to these parts of the world, you should:

  • only drink bottled or boiled water
  • avoid eating raw fruit or vegetables
  • wash your hands thoroughly if you come into contact with soil
  • eat hot food that's been cooked thoroughly

Read more about travel health and food and water abroad.

Page last reviewed: 26/08/2014

Next review due: 26/08/2017